Chinenye Anuforo [email protected]
The ICT sector cannot replace oil as economic mainstay without the huge revenues that accrue from the multimillion-dollar Value Added Services (VAS) market.
Conquently the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has urged the providers and developers of VAS and their telecom operator counterparts to form innovative alliances to achieve effective development in the Nigerian ICT sector.
Engr. Bako Wakil, director, technical standards and network integrity, at the 2019 VAS stakeholders’ forum in Lagos last week, said, “As the ICT ecosystem is transforming daily, VAS content developers and providers will have to collaborate and partner with other stakeholders in the telecom ecosystem, to drive development and proliferation of applications that will meet the needs of consumers.”
He called for collaboration so as to unlock the immense potentialities in the sector: “It is in this regard that the NCC organised this stakeholders’ forum.
“This forum is intended to create more awareness, guide participants in understanding the social and economic benefits of VAS, assist different stakeholders in the value chain to understand the importance of collaboration and partnership in the new ICT world where content is king”.
On the commission’s achievements in the past few years, he said: “The geometric increase in the number of VAS licensees recorded by the commission in the last few years is an indication of the growing interest in the segment.”
He went on to note the valuesderived from VAS adoption.
“It is also a reflection of how creative, innovative and enterprising we have become, considering that many applications, which provide solutions to our everyday needs, are now riding on the back of telecoms infrastructure as VAS services.
“For instances, you can now recharge your mobile phone, pay utility bills, make mobile payments through VAS platforms. VAS has thus made life simpler, contributed in promoting the financial inclusion policy of the government and facilitated the creation of wealth for many Nigerians,” he said.
He added that the NCC has allocated short codes to more than 200 VAS licenses for the provision of different VAS services and this has immensely enhanced service delivery in the VAS sector of the Nigerian ICT industry.